Analytic and holistic processing
in the development of constructions
A corpus analysis over several decades of American English shows the development of the minor construction from an idiom: <i>not have two Xs to rub together</i>. The sequence of developments indicates that the loss of compositionality and analyzability of the construction is heavily influenced by context of use. When the idiom is used metaphorically for intellectual impoverishment, indicators of loss of compositionality begin to arise.